Singularity Hub
Will Artificial Intelligence Become Conscious?
December 15th, 2017, 10:09 AM
Forget about today’s modest incremental advances in artificial intelligence, such as the increasing abilities of cars to drive themselves. Waiting in the wings might be a groundbreaking development: a machine that is aware of itself and its surroundings, and that could take in and process massive amounts of data in real time. It could be […]
The Massive Project to Clean Up the Ocean With a Two-Kilometer Screen
December 14th, 2017, 10:09 AM
Every year, eight million metric tons of plastic enter the ocean, threatening just about every marine species and ecosystem. As the global population grows and countries develop, this is only going to increase, eventually threatening us as well—if it isn’t already. The Great Pacific Garbage Patch swirls between Hawaii and California, made up of microparticles […]
How Clinical Trials Are Making the Case for MDMA in Psychotherapy
December 14th, 2017, 10:09 AM
In an interview at Exponential Medicine in San Diego, speaker Brad Burge discussed the innovative applications of MDMA in psychotherapy. Burge is the director of strategic communications at non-profit MAPS (Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies). Historically, MDMA has been known as a psychedelic drug and was criminalized in 1985. Because of this, we mostly hear about its use […]
There’s a Growing Abundance of Capital to Fund Bold Ventures
December 13th, 2017, 10:09 AM
There is a growing abundance of capital to fund entrepreneurs’ massive transformative purposes (MTPs) and moonshots. Last year, venture capitalists in the United States poured nearly $70 billion into entrepreneurs—just the tip of the iceberg. In this post, I’ll cover three places outside of traditional venture funding where I am seeing a growing abundance of […]
These Creepy Mini-Brains May Finally Crack Deadly Brain Cancer
December 12th, 2017, 10:09 AM
Brain organoids look like something between a malformed human brain and a character from Monsters, Inc. But don’t be fooled by their grotesque appearance. Ever since their introduction three years ago, brain organoids—charmingly dubbed “mini-brains” and “brain balls”—have been a darling in neuroscience research. Made from cells directly taken from human donors, these tiny clumps […]
Why Intelligent Optimism Is Crucial to Human Progress
December 11th, 2017, 10:09 AM
There is nothing to be gained from blind optimism. But an optimistic mindset can be grounded in rationality and evidence. It may be hard to believe, but we are living in the most exciting time in human history. Despite all of our ongoing global challenges, humanity has never been better off. Not only are we […]
History Suggests the Hyperloop Is an Uncertain Promise for Future Cities
December 10th, 2017, 10:09 AM
Proponents of Hyperloop have repeatedly suggested that their transportation technology will create new “mega-regions,” essentially reshaping the scope of cities. Multiple startups are now striving to defy critics and connect different dots on maps. But in the process they face formidable barriers and uncertain sociological outcomes. Most recently, Richard Branson made a sizable investment in […]
This Week’s Awesome Stories From Around the Web (Through December 9)
December 9th, 2017, 10:09 AM
ROBOTICS New Robots Can See Into Their Future Brett Israel | Berkeley News “Using this technology, called visual foresight, the robots can predict what their cameras will see if they perform a particular sequence of movements. These robotic imaginations are still relatively simple for now—predictions made only several seconds into the future—but they are enough for […]
Ultrafast 3D Printing Alternative Makes Complete 3D Objects in Seconds
December 8th, 2017, 10:09 AM
3D printing allows engineers to custom build intricate structures impossible with traditional manufacturing, but the layer-by-layer approach can be slow and limits the shapes that can be built. A new technique can now fabricate entire 3D shapes in seconds using holographic light fields. The technique, developed by researchers at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, uses […]
Black Holes Are Simpler Than Forests and Science Has Its Limits
December 8th, 2017, 10:09 AM
Albert Einstein said that the “most incomprehensible thing about the universe is that it is comprehensible.” He was right to be astonished. Human brains evolved to be adaptable, but our underlying neural architecture has barely changed since our ancestors roamed the savannah and coped with the challenges that life on it presented. It’s surely remarkable […]